Pearl Jam, R.E.M. & Ecstasy

Someone said, and then someone different said, that they didn’t ‘get’ Pearl Jam (the other one or maybe it was the same I can’t remember, said they didn’t ‘get’ R.E.M.) and all I could think was, well, you’ve never done and don’t get ‘ecstasy’ either because R.E.M, the Violent Femmes and Lou Reed were perfect ex music soundtracks. Then there’s Pearl Jam. If you like chicks, you better understand Eddie Vedder, the drunken bard, the Bacchus with his heart on his sleeve, the grunge hottie who’s still around.

But, then again, I was confounded and standing around on a beer-soaked floor, jaw clenched, walking up and down the stairs at SAE, having a revelation every 14 minutes, while my best friends were on their knees on the second floor, and I was finding my way from ground to penthouse, where at the end of night, yes, he couldn’t get it up, thanks to the purity of the ecstasy developed at UVa, circa 1985-86.

Why did REM and the Violent Femmes resonate so much? The nasal-y lyrics, the darkness of the soul, the


from playing the drums, ‘gardening at night’ to ‘blister in the sun’ — I don’t get the disconnect now but maybe that’s why I was unable to plug into their vibe

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